• 26 Feb 2015 /  Reviews

    HOLLYWOOD’S NEW BLOOD

    1989/77m

    “Where acting dead can be fatal.”

    Director/Writer: James Shyman / Cast: Bobby Johnson, Francine Lapensee, Joe Balogh, Martie Allyne, Al Valletta, Lynne Pirtle, Ken Denny, Kent Abrams, Allen Francis, George Spellman, Donna Lynn.

    Body Count: 7

    Laughter Lines: “Memories don’t die as easy as people.”

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    Marginally less of an endurance test than The Last Slumber Party, still Hollywood’s New Blood, at a meagre 77 minutes (10 of which are credits and an unwanted recap of the ‘best bits’), feels longer than a Star Wars marathon.

    Young folks at an ‘acting seminar’ at the woods by Storm Lake, outside of L.A. (looking suspiciously like Griffith Park) are set upon by a trio of brothers, thought to have burned to death in an accident years earlier. They’re pissed and they hate actors.

    Firstly, the great irony of Hollywood’s New Blood is that these people are attending an acting class, yet unaware of the genre they’re in. At one point, a guy finds the body of his pal tied to a tree and just grunts like he missed a pin at bowling, then stumbles across two more slain corpses and strides off without so much as a shrug.

    Mucho wandering around the same small patch of trees under the same shot of a full moon or the same exterior shot of the cabin they were all in… This is the type of movie where people can’t see a shady figure who’s standing two feet away.

    The villains, on the other hand, look like a cross between the greasy family from Pete’s Dragon or extras from The Fog, who’ve accidentally stumbled on to the wrong set.

    Small points are earned for mullets, death-by-skull (!) and the earlier amazing moment where one of the characters finds said skull and takes it for a little show and tell: “This is no animal – these bones are human.” No shit. It’s a motherfucking SKULL.

    You can at least have a good chuckle watching Hollywood’s New Blood, suffering through the dreadful title song that goes over the Greatest Hits compendium after the actual 67 minute film has ended, which is more than can be said for some other examples from the era.

    Blurb-of-interest: Joe Balogh was in MoonStalker.

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  • 23 Feb 2015 /  Reviews

    BLOOD FRENZY

    1987/87m

    Director: Hal Freeman / Writer: Ted Newsom / Cast: Wendy MacDonald, Tony Montero, Lisa Loring, Lisa Savage, Hank Garrett, Monica Silveria, John Clark.

    Body Count: 7

    Laughter Lines: “So I’m a dick-smoker, huh? That’s great coming from a pussy-buffer and fucked up shrink!”

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    This one had been on my list since the mid-90s. With unreasonably high expectations, finding it after almost twenty years was a real moment of excitement! In other words: I never learn.

    A drunken father finds his daughter playing with a Jack in the Box, flips, and she ends up killing him with some garden trowel-like implement.

    Blah years later, a psychotherapist (MacDonald) accompanies an RV of her patients to a desert retreat in the Mojave to help them confront their issues, which include a Casanova complex, alcoholism, PTSD, and a hot blonde chick with nymphomania. Naturally, non-hot blonde chicks are never cast in this role.

    There are arguments and insults, minimal psycho babble and, after the approximate amount of time it takes for a glacier to form, one of them has their throat cut.

    In the morning, the murder is discovered and everyone blames the PTSD ‘Nam vet dude, then believe him when he denies it… They decide to split into pairs: Two stay with the immobilized RV, and the others go in alternate directions to find help.

    The Pop Goes the Weasel playing Jack in the Box appears and more throat slashings occur: Apparently you can actually continue screaming despite such a fatal wound.

    Despite the foreknowledge that the child murderer was female, Blood Frenzy tosses in a so-so twist on the expected outcome, paving a way for quite a decent round of fisticuffs between the final living players coupled with some hilarious overacting. But with only seven central cast members, you can’t make too many incorrect guesses either way.

    Echoes of Death Valley and The Hills Have Eyes rebound off the arid landscape, and a few amusing lines of Direlogue lighten things up, but ultimately it wasn’t worth the wait. Sad times.

    Blurb-of-interest: Lisa Loring was in Iced.

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  • 18 Feb 2015 /  Today I Love

    “Life is change. Death is dwelling on the past or staying in one place too long,” – Rachel Flax.

    From the beginning of March, VeVo and his dog will be taking to the roads of Europe for a year or so in this beaut of a van (named Scooby):

    I’ve given up my job, rented out my digs, and entrusted three boxes of DVDs to a storage locker.

    Thus, frequent and strong WiFi or Jeepers Creepers-esque highway psychos notwithstanding, updates may occasionally be lax. Or boring.

    Never fear, I’m still here (or there, or wherever) with a book of unreviewed DVDs along for the ride, so in some shoddy form or another, I WILL NEVER LEEEEAVE YOOOU.

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  • 13 Feb 2015 /  TGI Friday!

    It’s the 13th! Properly the 13th. So don’t be a dick:

     

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  • 09 Feb 2015 /  Reviews

    THE LAST SLUMBER PARTY

    1988/72m

    “Where the girls are DYING for a good time.”

    Director/Writer: Stephen Tyler / Cast: Jan Jensen, Nancy Meyer, Joann Whitley, David Whitley, Danny David, Lance Descourez, Paul Amend, Rick Polizzi, Barbara Clairborne, Stephen Tyler.

    Body Count: 12

    Laughter Lines: “My parents would decapitate me if they ever caught me kissing a boy!”

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    Time passes by so quickly. Unless you’re the Righteous Brothers or find yourself sat down with The Last Slumber Party, a film so inherently dreadful in every conceivable way that there aren’t enough sublatives in the English language to illustrate just how terrible it is. It genuinely felt like I spent the whole day watching it.

    Unhappy with the concept of having a frontal lobotomy, a mental patient escapes, dons a surgeons scrubs, and journeys to the family home of his doctor – who owns the world’s most hideously decorated house – where his boring daughter Linda, is to host a slumber party for her equally crap gal-pals Tracy and Chris, who hope their boyfriends will crash proceedings and repeatedly (and I mean REPEATEDLY) tell Linda that Scott will call her.

    Meanwhile, the bug-eyed psycho is taking a scalpel to schmucks who cross his path and soon finds himself at the party. For a short while (although nothing in The Last Slumber Party feels anything close to short) things play out like any cheapjack film: The girls watch TV, snack, and jabber inanely, repeatedly saying “You scared the shit outta me!” to one another, even when absolutely nothing has happened.

    Boys come to “scare the piss out of the girls”, which entails climbing up a ladder with a dollar store Halloween mask on. The girls barely blink the prank is so crap. Eventually, the psycho slashes a couple of throats, loitering behind victims in rooms there really is no place to hide in. The girls wonder where their boyfriends are, referring to them with a tirade of homophobic names (queer/faggot/homo, i.e. “He’s such a homo he even took the bedspread!”)

    However, someone else comes along and kills one of the boys in the same manner, with virtually the same outfit on. What? He goes to slice one of the girls but is instead fatally attacked by the first killer. Chris has a random dream that people are dead. Said dream includes her standing at the front door staring out of it for like sixty seconds doing nothing. NOTHING. I am watching a girl stood in a doorway doing nothing.

    Everyone else dies and when the doctor returns, he’s immediately called back to the hospital by America’s most sarcastic nurse: “He’s escaped”; “Escaped? Have you called the police?” – this is gold – “No doctor, we all thought we should call you first.”

    Doc goes back to hospital and is murdered in the elevator, his body magically transported back to the house and tossed in the pool literally seconds later. Chris goes to his aid and is then mercifully slashed by the killer.

    THEN SHE FUCKING WAKES UP.

    Chris gets a call from Tracy and tells her: “I had a nightmare within the nightmare!” to which Tracey responds: “I’m bored out of my skull.” You and me both, love.

    They drive over to Linda’s just as Linda receives a call from the hospital informing her the psycho has escaped and she should shut all the doors. However, she picks up the phone without saying hello or identifying herself, so how the fuck does the person on the other end even know who it is or when to end the call!?

    Aggressively bad. Watch for the botched throat slashings; the same shot of the killer wielding the scalpel at the camera used about a dozen times. And Chris fucking sucks as the choice for final girl, not that either of the other “I’m 37-but-can-play-17″ “actresses” would be any better, but she’s by far the worst with her shrill voice and nasty homophobic comments. The horrific thrash metal soundtrack by Firstryke (even used as some sort of plug on that VHS cover!) should’ve clued us in early on as they wail “it’s just a nightmaaaaaare!” Damn shame I didn’t wake up and find The Last Slumber Party wasn’t real either.

    Now I know some of you will think “it can’t be that bad” and consider trying it. Don’t. Don’t be the fool I was. Even as a freebie on YouTube, this is 72 minutes you cannot claw back. A very possible candidate for worst horror film ever made. Ever.

    The Last Slumber Party is a B & S Production. I think we can all agree what that might stand for.

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